Despite getting selected in the second round of the 2011 MLB Draft by the New York Yankees, Texas Longhorns' LHP Sam Stafford decided to go back to school for his senior year. After an injury-plagued final campaign, he ended up lasting until the 13th round of the 2012 MLB Draft. He's our 14th "Hidden Gem" of 2012.
After banging out 47 home runs over the last three seasons, the 2011 SEC Player of the Year (Mike Zunino, #3 pictured at catcher) clearly established himself as one of the nation's most capable power hitters. His defensive prowess behind the plate was one of the big reasons the Seattle Mariners made him a Top Five pick in the 2012 MLB Draft. We break down the impressive former Gators' leader in our video spotlight.
One of the draft's best middle infielders, Fontana (#4 pictured) ramped it up in the power department in 2012 with nine home runs (through June 8). He has been instrumental in back-to-back College World Series appearances for the Florida Gators, who are hoping to earn their third consecutive trip to Omaha this weekend. The Houston Astros are banking on Fontana to become one of its staples in the coming years.
The St. Louis Cardinals won their eleventh world championship last Friday in what proved to be one of the most exciting World Series matchups of all-time. Led by NLCS and Series MVP David Freese (#23 pictured), this team will go down in the ages as one of the most inspirational groups ever put together. Draftnasty.com pays a special tribute to the championship squad and manager Tony LaRussa, who finished his 33-year managerial career third in all-time victories.
When Vanderbilt RHP Sonny Gray (#2 pictured) steps on the mound, he's almost certain to draw a reaction with his 95 MPH fastball. The former two-time state championship QB (Smyrna HS-Tenn.) has not had a problem leading the way for the Commodores. After notching 10 wins and a 2.12 ERA in 2011, Gray now hopes to lead the NCAA's #6 seed all the way to Omaha, Neb.
One of this summer's top prospects, Spring Valley RHP Taylor Guerrieri has more than the right stuff to succeed at the next level. DraftNasty.com tried to catch up with the 6'3 180-pounder's heat this past season.
As the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets continue on their quest to a potential ACC Championship, the College World Series looms right around the corner. The next couple of weeks will be critical for two of their star performers, as both prepare for next level ascension. P Deck McGuire and SS Derek Dietrich have been consistent, if not startling in 2010, building on each of their fine resumes'. With a strong close to the 2010 season, one or both players have a chance to go in the early rounds of this June's MLB Draft. In fact, McGuire could very well be a Top 15 selection next month.
DraftNasty.com traveled to Cook Country HS (Adel, GA.) Friday afternoon to catch a doubleheader featuring four-time Area Player of the Year Kaleb Cowart. Cowart, projected by many to be a first round pick in June's MLB Draft, has some tough decisions ahead in the near future. Already committed to attend Florida State on a baseball scholarship, he may have to decide whether or not to attend the university or follow his dreams of playing major league baseball right away. Blessed with maturity beyond his years and a supportive family, Cowart's immense talent is likely to shine regardless of his decision.
DraftNasty.com traveled to East Coweta HS in Sharpsburg, GA Wednesday afternoon to catch the first game of a state playoff doubleheader featuring RHP Cameron Bedrosian. Bedrosian, the son of 1987 Cy Young Award winner Steve Bedrosian, didn't disappoint, shelving hitters all afternoon in a one run loss. He's been working on continuing to add pitches to his already impressive arsenal, with his fastball being clocked by some scouts in attendance in the 95 MPH range.